Hayes & Yeading started the new year with a point from a comeback local derby draw at the SKYex against Harrow Borough after the visitors had led 2-0 with just over 20 minutes to play.
Manager Paul Hughes made two enforced changes to the starting XI that had outplayed Chesham United on their own patch on Boxing Day with Amos Nasha and Paul Field coming in for the injured Cole Brown and Jerry Wiltshire respectively.
United started the game well and could have had a couple of goals in the opening five minutes as Amos Nasha controlled a Stan Flaherty centre only to fire over and a minute later another cross from the left picked out Danny Green but his glancing header went marginally side of the upright.
While the visitors had a fairly even share of possession the chances seemed to be going the way of the home side and another brace came just before the 20 minute mark. Skipper Charlie Wassmer headed down to Sanmi Odelusi but his shot was too high and shortly after Moses Emmanuel collected the ball in the box and with a smart turn left defender Prince Kandolo for dead only to fire wide of the target.
A tussle of midfield minds followed with both back lines keeping the other well at arms length until the final few minutes. On 42 minutes a neat exchange between Taylor Miles and Emmanuel saw the former receive a return pass only to fire over.
In stoppage time the visitors pushed forwards with Billy Leonard firing a cross-field ball to Kai Omoko Brosnan, he cut inside and hit a stinging shot that Rhys Byrne did well to tip into the side netting. The resultant corner was partially cleared by the United defence but only as far as Leonard who crossed again to Brosnan just beyond the far post where he poked the ball past Byrne with his shot seemingly being cleared off the line by the United defence only for the referee’s assistant to award a goal although the Borough supporters behind the goal didn’t seem overly convinced at the time and United’s vehement protests earned cautions for both Wassmer and Assistant Manager Ritchie Hanlon on the bench.
Buoyed by going ahead, the visitors came out quickly after the break looking to capitalise and less than a minute after the re-start Leonard and Johnny Allotey combined well on the left side of the United area with Allotey’s drive being well blocked by a sliding Nasha with Ahmet Biler firing the loose ball over.
Minutes later Brosnan dispossessed a United defender just to the right of the box and fired the ball low and hard across the face of Byrne’s goal but thankfully for United just out of the range of a sliding Allotey at the far post.
In the 54th minute Allotey was to double the visitors lead though as he collected the ball in the area and with quick feet left two defenders in his wake before firing past Byrne and just four minutes later he almost had another when Brosnan’s cross was collected at the far post only for Byrne to block his effort away at close quarters.
Brosnan was then denied a third for Borough by a superb Cameron Green tackle and the faintest of touches by Wassmer was enough to take Isiah Noel-Williams’ centre away from Brosnan while a Montel Brown shot was saved comfortably by Byrne as United continued to be pushed onto the back foot by the speed of the visitors attacks.
With the visitors appearing to tire a little, United found a way back into the game on 69 minutes as a free-kick was fired into the Harrow box, the ball was flicked away by the Borough defence but quickly recovered to the right of the box by Wassmer who span to cross to the far post where Adam Liddle nodded the ball back to Emmanuel and he flicked home his 12th of the season with the outside of his boot although he appeared to get injured in the process and was replaced soon after by Jamie Hanlon.
As we entered the final ten minutes substitute Hassan Jalloh sent Miles through on goal with a superb pass, the midfielders shot with the outside of his foot going agonisingly wide of the upright and then just two minutes later the visitors could have sealed the deal when Leonard’s corner from the left dropped to Kamon-Sherrell Assidjo but his effort deflected just wide of the United goal.
United closed the final five minutes in control of the game. With four minutes remaining Liddle was sent through on goal and as he attempted to move around Jacob Knightbridge in the Borough goal, the young stopper stuck out a long boot and won a perfect tackle to deny the United striker what would have been a certain goal.
With many no doubt thinking this was United’s chance of a leveller gone, the players had other ideas and as we hit the 90th minute a free-kick earned in our own half was sneaked forward maybe 15-20 yards with the ball being fired into the Borough box, Wassmer won a header which dropped to Danny Green who nodded home (photo above) the equaliser for his third in just four games in a United shirt and it was to end honours even as both teams start 2023 with an additional point on the board.
Report by Kevin Watts.
Photos by Anthony Mills.
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